By Kate Forman, Indra Ventura and Sophie Ainsworth
On July 1st, 2018 (10 months ago) the Australian Space Agency (ASA) was formed as part of the Australian’s government 2018 budget.
They announced that they would be providing $26 million in seed funding over four years from 2018 in order to establish the agency, and with that a further $15 million would be spent for international space investment starting from 2019.
So, what are they actually doing currently?
The answer to this is that they have not disclosed their activities to the public, so it is to an extent unknown as to what they are spending the $26 million they receive each year. The limited information revealed to the Australian public is that the agency will allegedly:
· Lift the broader economy
· Inspire and improve the lives of Australians
· Be underpinned by strong international and nation engagement
In addition to this they have developed the Australian Civil Space Strategy outlining the Government’s plan to “transform and grow our space industry over 10 years”.
Phase 1 of this strategy runs throughout 2018 and 2019 in the initial phases of the ASA. In the national sector of this phase they intend to:
· Fund space activities through the CSIRO
· Develop statements of strategic intent with nation and international industry partners
· Invest in two of the seven national civil space priories – position, navigation and timing (SBAS and NPIC) and Earth observation (DEA) through Geoscience Australia.
As the Australian Space Agency was only formed last year, Australians cannot be too harsh on the amount of progress they have made within the space society. They are currently just assessing which area in the space industry they want Australia to develop on.